This is an open letter to Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi and acting Police Commissioner McDonald Jacob.

Mr Al-Rawi, while it is commendable that you had somewhat of an epiphany on Old Year’s Night and awoke on New Year’s Day determined to address the nuisance and dangers of the fireworks menace, any attempt to do so while continuing to ignore the general and widespread nuisance that is noise pollution is disrespectful and without merit.

Be reminded, sir, that you are the “guardian of the public interest”, yet you seem to be consistently ignoring the numerous letters and complaints by citizens on this issue. Why is that, sir?

The police are not dealing with this problem. Furthermore, in some cases the police may even be misleading the public to believe a law on our books which states “Creating a public nuisance” needs a decibel meter to be enforced. It would be very helpful if you could publicly interpret this mysterious law, and make any necessary changes in the public’s interest.

Mr Jacob, sir, could you possibly explain to the citizens of this country why the police have never enforced this said law? Are you aware that noise pollution is a widespread nuisance? Are you also aware that a lot of this so-called music residents are being forced to endure on a daily basis contains obscene lyrics?

I am also curious—as I read the recent health regulations regarding the opening of rivers, streams, etc—about whether the police officers who would be ensuring no loud music is played at rivers, etc, are the same officers who ignore these very noisy cars on our roadways daily. I would really appreciate if you could answer these questions publicly, sir.

I have to again register my disappointment at the media for its failure to ask these pertinent questions.

DF Redmond



As previously indicated, I was not impressed with the professed heartbreak of the pathetic Minister of Gender and Child Affairs, Ayanna Webster-Roy. The cruel treatment of children in State-funded homes, exposed by the recent Judith Jones report, was going on under the minister’s nose and that of the PNM Government in office since 2015.

Finance Minister Colm Imbert got it absolutely right when he described the windfall from the petrochemical sector as a “life jacket for Trinidad and Tobago”.

A life jacket will keep us afloat, but not necessarily carry us to safety. Getting there will depend on multiple other variables. However, we do not envy Minister Imbert’s sense of relief and even glee as he watches critical economic indicators shifting in a more positive direction. Watching the Government’s overdraft limit inching towards 100 per cent is enough to tie up anyone’s stomach in knots.

Twelve years ago, I termed leaders of Russia and China, Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping, dangerous anachronisms in the 21st century who, with their nuclear arsenals, could produce “a global descent into darkness”. Steeped in their countries’ imperial past, each wants his nation’s supremacy revived in the modern world.

I have grown accustomed to watching a scene in front of me—teenage boys kicking what life there was in a long-expired football, others of similar age and background carrying on an animated discussion on a subject I could not determine from where I stood, and yet others glued to their communication devices, maybe “chatting” with friends, maybe conducting extensive research into issue—I don’t know.

When we voted for the PNM in 2015, we felt that we were voting to end corruption and to bring to justice those who had stolen from the State. Unfortunately, we were wrong. Seven long years after PNM’s ascendancy to power, no one has been found guilty of any major crime of corruption, but then again, all those allegations may have been a mirage in our collective imagination.

In a Ria Taitt article in the Express on Friday, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley says countries cannot continue to operate on the basis of “you versus me and mine versus yours”, which I definitely agree with.

But coming from Rowley, whose whole political career has been “you versus me”, be it Patrick Manning, Kamla Persad-Bissessar and the UNC (United National Congress), or now Gary Griffith, it seems hollow and hypocritical.